Conserved Buildings

Conserved buildings are what make Singapore’s history tangible, and shape our identity as a nation. It is important that conserved buildings retain their inherent spirit and original ambience, while keeping the city’s planning needs in mind. 

Renovation Works

As such, owners, architects and engineers intending to carry out restoration works and development are required to comply with our conservation guidelines.

The building conservation and restoration process is guided by the 3R Principle of Maximum Retention, Sensitive Restoration and Careful Repair, with a set of conservation guidelines to inform building owners on the principles and parameters for conservation and restoration work.


Use of Conserved Buildings

The allowable uses of conserved buildings follows the Master Plan zoning and is subjected to prevailing guidelines.

If the conserved building is located within the Historic Conservation Areas – Chinatown (Kreta Ayer, Telok Ayer, Bukit Pasoh, Tanjong Pagar), Little India, Kampong Glam, Boat Quay, Blair Plain, Emerald Hill and Cairnhill, you will need to apply for conservation permission before starting business operations.

Check if your building is located within the Historic Conservation Areas or check on the allowable and approved uses for shophouses.

Certain types of uses are not allowed in the Historic Conservation Areas as they may create dis-amenity to the surroundings. These uses include:

  • New bars, pubs, nightclubs and karaoke lounges
  • New massage establishments and spas
  • Amusement centres
  • Motor vehicle showrooms
  • Warehouse stores. They may only be considered if such a use is ancillary to the main use
  • Places of worship, unless previously authorised. They should be located on land zoned for places of worship
  • Pollutive trades such as engineering, spray-painting, welding, plumbing, motor, metal and joinery workshops, tyre and battery shops, and plastic products manufacturing

Refer to the conservation guidelines for details. 

For conserved buildings outside of Historic Conservation Areas, you can check on the criteria for the use of the property for more.